TV series demand across all television platforms for the U.S. (20 - 26 May, 2023)

30 May, 2023

Image: The Flash, The CW

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The week of May 20 - 26 saw The Flash become the most in-demand show in the U.S. with 89.4 times more demand than the average series. The Flash dethroned Spongebob Squarepants, which had 83.9 times the demand average, after a 24% surge in audience attention pushed it up the ranking. After almost a decade of being on air, The CW superhero show bid farewell to fans with its series finale on May 24 as it concluded its story. Meanwhile, South Park and HBO’s Game of Thrones retained their positions in the ranking in third and fourth place for yet another week. While South Park did see a 5% decline in demand this week, Game of Thrones was observed to have a minor 2% increase.

Another HBO series, Successionhad an increase in demand although this was a more significant spike at +18%. The increase in demand for the show came in the days after its penultimate episode aired on May 21, signalling audience attention shifting to the series as viewers began catching up to all the episodes in preparation for the finale. Given that the finale aired on May 28, and that it brings about the conclusion of Succession’s story, we expect to see another significant increase in demand for the show as more audience data comes in next week. As of this week, it rose up to become the sixth most in demand show in the U.S. with 59 times the average series demand.

As predicted last week, Fox’s The Simpsons did have an increase in demand post its finale on May 21, but it was a relatively minor 2% movement which saw it have 58.3 times the average series demand this week. It looks like The Simpsons’ season finale didn’t bring in as many eyeballs to the show as was expected, which could likely be attributed to audience attention being firmly set on higher profile shows and their finales such as The Flash, Succession and The Voice! which aired part 2 of its live finale on May 23. The reality series also had an impressive 12% increase in demand this week, which brought it back in the ranking in ninth place with 54.5 times the average series demand. Rounding out the overall top shows ranking we see NBC’s Saturday Night Live sliding down to tenth place with 51.1 times the demand average this week. As mentioned last week, the series has been suffering a decline due to the ongoing WGA strike, which has forced the network to pause production of any new content and switch to airing re-runs until the strike is resolved.

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Stranger Things remained the top streaming original in the U.S. for yet another week with a further 2% increase which made it 59.5 times more in demand than the average series this week. Although Ted Lasso wasn’t too far behind as it remained in second place thanks to another 9% increase in demand this week. Ted Lasso is yet another show that is set to conclude its story this month, so it’s not surprising to see the critically acclaimed show capture such high audience attention this week. The spike in demand mainly came after its penultimate episode aired on May 24 and given its popularity in the U.S., we expect to see a much higher increase in demand after its series finale airs on May 31; perhaps even taking the top position away from Stranger Things next week.

The remaining three positions among the top 5 streaming originals remained unchanged this week with Disney+’s The Mandalorian, HBO Max’s Titans and Netflix’s You taking third, fourth and fifth place each, despite all three shows having a slight decline in demand. Meanwhile, Prime Video’s The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel had another 11% increase in demand that saw it climb up to take sixth place in the ranking this week. The show is yet another among a slate of series finales this month - its conclusion aired on May 26, which explains the double digit increase in audience attention, ending on a high note with 29.3 times more demand than the average series this week. 

Two new entrants made their way into the ranking with a double digit increase in demand this week - Crave’s Letterkenny (+12%) came in at ninth place with 27.4 times the demand average, while Hulu’s The Orville (+14%) took tenth place with 26.3 times the average series demand. While the increase in demand for Letterkenny came as a result of a surprise episode that aired on May 19 (the show is currently in between seasons so this was a treat for its fans), the increased demand for The Orville isn’t linked to any new content (nor announcements on that front) but to a recent interview with its star, Chad Coleman where he delved into the importance of The Orville for the LGBTQI+ community and why fan campaigns matter when it comes to resurrecting and renewing shows. The fan-favorite show has been in a state of limbo since its third season ended in August last year, with no news of whether the show will even have a season 4.

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